One wonders how Dinesh Karthik may have fared had he not played in the times of Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Karthik won’t be the only cricketer whose career graph was designed on how Dhoni fared, and sadly for most of them, he fared brilliantly almost all the while. Karthik is, in some ways, a little more fortunate than most others, since he got his little place under the limelight, though those moments have been fleeting most of the time. For a man who has been a constant in the Indian Premier League (IPL) livery, Karthik’s India appearances have not been half as many as the cricketer certainly thinks he merits. But then, that is the irony that gets him headlines.Also Read – PBKS Spinner Rahul Chahar Throws Challenge At Rohit Sharma & Suryakumar Yadav, Says Long Association With MI Doesn’t Matter
The man has an amazing IPL record. Ever since his debut in 2008, Karthik has represented six franchises over 14 years and is one of the most consistent appearances over the years, missing hardly any of the games where he has made it to the playing XI. This is a testament to his fitness, since many players, much younger than him, have often found the going really tough. Also Read – IPL 2022: Virat Kohli Interacts With Ruturaj Gaikwad After RCB vs CSK Clash
Take this year. Appearing for Royal Challengers Bangalore (once again after the 2015 season), Karthik has scores of 32 not out (14 balls) against Punjab Kings; 14 not out (7 balls, vs Kolkata Knight Riders); 44 not out (23 balls vs Rajasthan Royals); 7 not out (2 balls, vs Mumbai Indians) and 34 off 14 deliveries against Chennai Super Kings, on Wednesday night. Also Read – Harbhajan Singh Echoes Gautam Gambhir’s Sentiments, Says Dhoni Alone Wrongly Credited For World Cup 2011 Triumph – ‘Baaki 10 Waha Lassi Peene Gaye The?’ – Watch Video
The strike rate is there for all to see, as also the fact that he does come to bat way down the order. The assault on the Rajasthan Royals bowlers was something else.
Stuttering at 87/5 after 12.3 overs, RCB saw a sensational 67-run stand in barely more than five overs between Shahbaz Ahmed (45) and Karthik, which cleared the way for a six-wicket win for the Bengaluru franchise.
No wonder RCB have been vocal on social media that Karthik should be considered for the T20 World Cup, just around the corner.
No doubt Karthik has a case, but it will take some courageous decisions to make this happen.
Rishabh Pant is the current blue-eyed boy in the Indian scheme of things and it would take quite a bit of courage to play two wicketkeepers in the XI, surrendering the slot for possibly a bowling all-rounder. As always, Karthik may again be the sideshow.
If there are any frustrations, the Tamil Nadu cricketer has hidden them well. All he can do is plug away and keep getting those runs. Maybe a little more steadiness with the keeping gloves would also help. After that, it is all left up the greater powers to maybe show some vision and courage and back Karthik to deliver as he does most of the time.